- The Washington Times - Monday, January 15, 2001

'Base portrayal'

"The biggest tease for viewers to stay tuned to the new survival show, 'Temptation Island,' is to find out if Fox producers eventually survive puberty." …

"The allegedly reality-based 'Temptation Island' has nothing to do with the reality of human relationships, but seeks to reduce male-female relationships to nothing more than a national peep show. Human development has been beached on 'Temptation Island' in a permanent state of adolescence.

"Such a base portrayal of human relations may help generate clientele for the Big Abortion industry, but it does great harm to our culture, especially to our teens, who are already bombarded with misinformation that recreational sex is cool and natural. The show is a disservice to our country… .

"Lust and the objectification of the human person are themes which dominate the show."

Cathy Brown, director of "Why Life?" in a Friday press release

Wide-open Oscars

"What if they staged the 73rd Annual Academy Awards show and nobody cared? As movie industry savants sat down to carve their Thanksgiving turkeys … there wasn't much to be grateful for, Oscar-wise. Eleven months into the year 2000, only two movies with broad-based appeal 'Erin Brockovich' … and 'Gladiator' … had staked out a credible claim on the glittering prize. Suddenly, with the year-end deadline for awards qualification fast approaching, the cupboard was looking awfully bare.

"Normally, by summer's end, the glut of popcorn movies gives way to the more ambitious Oscar wannabes, but this year, the fall roster came up short. The awards buzz on [several] movies … dissipated as they stalled at the box office: They were marked down as damaged goods… . The field thinned even further when several movies with blue-ribbon credentials … were pushed back into 2001… .

"All this opened the floodgates to anyone harboring Oscar aspirations no matter how unrealistic the odds. 'It's a wide-open season,' exults Michael Barker, Sony Pictures Classics' cochief, who hopes to engineer one of the season's most daring gambits: a run for a best-picture berth for Ang Lee's 'Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.' Although a real crowd-pleaser it won the People's Choice Award at last year's Toronto film festival the subtitled, Mandarin-language movie faces an uphill battle with the Academy, which in its entire history has nominated only six foreign-language movies for best picture."

Gregg Kilday, writing on "Wanted: Oscar-Caliber Movie," in the February issue of Premiere

Racial worldview

"In every race-related debate whether over Rodney King, O.J. Simpson, the Million Man March, Ebonics, or affirmative action almost every black person I knew, many from backgrounds as comfortable as my own, started from the fierce conviction that, decades after the Civil Rights Act, whitey's foot remains pressed upon all black Americans' necks. For most black Americans, the rapid increase of the black middle class, of interracial relationships and marriages, and of blacks in prestigious positions has no bearing on the real state of black America. Further, they believe, whites' inability to grasp the unmistakable reality of oppression is itself proof of racism, while blacks who question that reality are self-deluded.

"Doubtless some black leaders mouth the ideology of victimhood for political advantage: 'Confrontation works,' as Al Sharpton has calculatingly observed. But most rank-and-file exponents of the 'racism forever' worldview really mean it… . These beliefs, rather than what remains of racism itself, are the biggest obstacle to further black progress in today's America."

Josh H. McWhorter, writing on "What's Holding Blacks Back?" in the winter issue of City Journal


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